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Press Releases | 07.11.2020

Felix Großschartner defends top 10 position in GC following last Vuelta mountain stage

The penultimate stage of the Vuelta, which came to a conclusion with a decisive mountaintop finish, was responsible for slight changes in the overall standings today. Following 30 km in the saddle, the mountainous roller coaster kicked off with five classified climbs, including an ascent up to the Alto de Covatilla, a Hors Category climb. Pascal Ackermann and Michael Schwarzmann first managed to make the cut into a 34-man breakaway, which was able to gather a lead of up to 4 minutes. On the final climbs, an increasing number of riders from the break were swept up by the field behind. Then with 15 km remaining, a trio from the leading group attacked and carved out a small advantage. On the final climb, which came about 5 km later, Felix Großschartner unfortunately suffered a mechanical, but was able to catch up with the peloton not long afterwards. Afterwards, BORA - hansgrohe took the lead, but with 7 km to the finish, the gap to the leaders was still 3:45 minutes. A little later, D. Gaudu attacked from a reduced chase group and was able to bridge the gap to the leading group. Back in the group of favourites, which also included Felix Großschartner, teammate Ide Schelling dictated the pace in support of his teammate in his fight to defend his position in the general classification. After 178 kilometres in the saddle, Gaudu ultimately took the stage honours. At the end of a draining stage, Felix crossed the finish line in 21st place, and thereby places ninth in the overall standings.

 

Result

01 D. Gaudu                4:54:32

02 G. Mäder                     +0:28

03 I. Izagirre.                    +1:05

21 F. Großschartner        +3:51

    

From the Finish Line

"I’m admittedly a little disappointed that there was such a large group in the front. I had a mechanical on the last climb, and it took up quite a lot of energy to catch up again. In the end, I lost two positions in the overall standings, but ultimately I'm still in the top 10 and I can be proud of that." - Felix Großschartner

"The goal today was to have the team support Felix. From the onset, we concentrated on making sure that not too large of a group was able to break free. We particularly wanted to make sure that Vlasov didn't make it into the group, with him being 9th in the overall standings at the time. There was a very fast start, and in the end a large group managed to break away. Michael Schwarzmann and Pascal Ackermann were in there, but also Gaudu and De la Cruz, who were dangerous in the overall classification. We tried to react, but were unable to close the gap, and from then onwards, we tried to keep Felix in a good position at all times. With Pascal and Schwarzi, we had two riders up front, who were still there after the first climb if anything were to happen, and they could wait for Felix to support him. The others put in their best effort and supported him as well as possible. They rode a very strong race today and were able to stay with Felix for much of the day. Shortly before the last climb, Felix unfortunately suffered a puncture and had to change his bike, which also cost him a lot of effort. Gaudu and De la Cruz rode very strongly today and were able to overtake him in the overall standings. In the end, he’s now in ninth place, which is a very strong performance. In one respect, we're disappointed that our efforts weren’t enough to defend his 7th place overall, but on the other hand we're also happy that he’s sitting in the top ten. Many thanks to the entire team, who really gave it everything during this race. Tomorrow is the final day, and it will in all likelihood come down to a sprint finale. With Pascal, we have a rider who’ll be able to compete for the victory.” - Enrico Poitschke, Sports Director

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